SportsProf

(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The Problem with Having Rattlesnakes as Pets

is that they can rear up and bite you.

Which is why the MLB Players' Association's concerns about collusion over teams' not signing Barry Bonds is misplaced.

You saw the reports about how much looser the Giants' clubhouse was this spring. This is a polite way of saying that despite random acts of kindness he might have shown to individual teammates, the guy, generally, was not a good teammate in the clubhouse.

You don't know whether he did or does take performance-enhancing drugs.

There's a concern regarding what he did or didn't say to Federal authorities and whether he might have perjured himself.

You also don't know how much he thinks he's worth on the market.

Given all that, why does the word "collusion" need to enter into the equation. Seems to me that each team has made an independent judgment -- a pretty obvious one, at that -- that they don't want Barry Bonds and all of his baggage around.

At least for now.

Come July, come August, when a good team, particularly an AL team, is a bat short, that team might be tempted to sign Bonds to a short-term deal to help them carry the day. If Jason Giambi continues to whiff but the Yankees hang in there, perhaps King Hank I will pay a small king's ransom to retain the Homering Hessian for a partial season. Should the A's get closer and Frank Thomas or Jack Cust go down, Billy Beane might just get tempted to get Bonds to cross a few bridges and commute to Hegenberger Road and the Oakland Coliseum.

But collusion?

The MLBPA needs to do a better job of prioritizing its battles.

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